Culture Blogs


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Culture Blogs

Popular subjects in contemporary Pagan culture and practice.

Category contains 2 blog entries contributed to teamblogs

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Reinventing the Wheel

If the orientation of the monuments that they left behind is anything to go by, the peoples of megalithic Britain observed both quarters (sunsteads and evendays) and cross-quarters (Samhain, Imbolc, etc.).

Just like we do.

Different peoples, different ways. As they've come down to us, the cross-quarters are largely a phenomenon of Keltic cultures, the quarters Germanic; hence the names by which they're generally called.

For this reason, some purists have decided to restrict themselves to observance only of quarters or cross-quarters. Well, everyone gets to make his or her own call. My own position is that purism is its own punishment.

According to maverick historian Stephen J. Yeates, the Anglo-Saxon tribe known as the Hwicce—the original Tribe of Witches—settled in the territory of the Keltic people known as the Dobunni, and both archaeology and genetics suggest that there's strong continuity between the two peoples, both demographically and culturally.

In other words, we would expect the tribe of Witches to be (culturally) a Kelto-Germanic amalgam.

Which, of course, is exactly what we are.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_curse.jpg

I confess: I am a book addict. Some people buy shoes, or clothes, or watches. I buy books. They are my go-to for comfort and inspiration. Digital, mass market, paperback, hardcover; picture book, reference book, fiction, nonfiction, poetry -- doesn't matter. I devour books, absorbing stories and information and artwork.

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"I no longer steal from nature" -- An ancient poem from Aleppo

I'm not sure if it's realistic or not, but the New Year always fills me with hopes for peace. The Winter Solstice starts that process, and the cathartic idea of the new year follows up with an "out with the old, in with the new" type of energy. But sometimes, a voice that is "old" brings us "new" insights. 

With all the hub-ub about diversity, immigration, refugees, and religious dialogue, I thought it would be nice to share a poem from a very renowned, very ancient Syrian poet. His name was Abu 'L'Ala Ahmad ibn 'Abdallah al-Ma'arri. Not surprisingly, he is most often referred to only as al-Ma'arri. He was born in Aleppo, and lived from about 973-1057 CE.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
13 o' Clock

 Thirteenth Night,

when time runs backwards,

and the world whirls giddily widdershins.

Happy Feast of Fools!

 

Htrae eht nopu tuo deruop si evol ym dna,

Gnivil lla fo Rehtom eht ma I, dloheb rof,

ecifircas ni thgua dnamed I od ron.

Erofeb enog evah ohw esoht htiw noinuer dna,

modeerf, ecaep, htaed dnoyeb dna;

lanrete tirips eht fo egdelwonk evig I, htrae nopu....

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Forget Resolutions. Use Intentions! –  New Beginnings with the Major Arcana of Tarot

Card images used in this article are from the exciting new Midcenturian Tarot by Madam Clara. Visit her Etsy shop here to snag your very own copy.

Tarot can be used for so much more than just divination. In fact, my favorite use of the cards is for focused intention and manifestation. Want to expand a particular energy in your life? Enhance an area? Invite more? Then consciously choose the card/s that represent whatever it is you want to attract; don’t rely on randomness or blind “Card of the Day” pulls to guess what it is you really want. (That’s a bit like wanting to make a specific recipe, going into a grocery store blindfolded and then pulling things off the shelves for your order!).

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Ass's Ears

 'Tis a fine, foolish thing to wear a crown.

(Proverb of New Crete)

 

Sometimes Old Hornie wears an ass's ears.

Tomorrow is Thirteenth Night, the last of Yule, when the Merry Monarch of Misrule holds sway.

It's a short reign, but a merry one.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

b2ap3_thumbnail_woods2_sm.jpgTo be orderly, tidy, structured would seem to be a human thing as opposed to something natural. A stroll in the woods, a thunderstorm, a wild river; none of these seem at all organized in the way that comes to mind when we used that word. “Organized” is more likely to produce images of a desk with every staple in its place, or a schedule so tight that relaxation time is marked on a calendar. But nature too is organized. In a mature eco-system, each element has a precise role to play. That role is highly efficient in that every plant, every animal, every bacterium performs multiple jobs within the system simply by going about their day.

The elderberry bush produces berries that both feeds birds and humans. It provides shade and shelter for small animals. Its rapidly growing branches create biomass that falls to the ground and nurtures and protects the soil herd.* The creatures the bush shelters poop and pee there, providing nutrients to the bush and the soil herd. The microbiota beneath the bush pull minerals and nitrogen from the soil and give it to the bush in exchange for a bit of carbon sugar that the plant makes special for each type of bacteria. The bacteria also build soil aggregates that retain water, which then nourishes the bush. Myochoriza - thin filaments of fungi – spread their strands between and through the roots, puncturing them and connecting the bush with other plants in the neighborhood. This allows them to share both resources and information.

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